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Phuket Army chief confirms BYO umbrellas, sun loungers welcome at Surin Beach

PHUKET: The Commander of the Royal Thai Army regiment based in Phuket has confirmed that all tourists, expats and Thais can take their own beach chairs and umbrellas to use at any place on Surin Beach.

tourism, military,


The Phuket News

Thursday 27 April 2017, 11:11AM


From Monday (May 1), rental beach mats and sun loungers will not be allowed on Surin Beach, but everday people - and tourists - can take their own, Phuket's leading Army officer has confirmed. Photo: The Phuket News / file
From Monday (May 1), rental beach mats and sun loungers will not be allowed on Surin Beach, but everday people - and tourists - can take their own, Phuket's leading Army officer has confirmed. Photo: The Phuket News / file

The news comes after MaAnn Samran, Chief of the Cherng Talay Tambon Administration Organisation (OrBorTor), announced earlier this week that vendors at Surin Beach had until next Monday, May 1, to remove all rental umbrellas and beach chairs from the sand. (See story here.)

In his explanation for the deadline, Mr MaAnn on Monday said, “On March 13, 36 beach operators came with reporters and requested for a ‘10% zone’ to be established at Surin Beach. I have already informed them that Surin Beach is a ‘royal majesty honour beach’ (sic), so no such zone is allowed.”

To this, Col Santi Sakuntanark, Commander of the 25th Infantry Regiment, based in Phuket, told The Phuket News yesterday (April 26), “Because Surin Beach is a ‘royal majesty honour beach’, everyone can be on the beach – all tourists, expats and Thais can take their umbrellas and sun loungers to Surin Beach. This is allowed.

Although the right to enjoy the beach extended to everyone, Col Santi drew the line at beach vendors.

“There must not be any beach operation or any kind of rental service action on Surin Beach at all,” he said.

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Col Santi told The Phuket News that he had spoken with Mr MaAnn on Tuesday (April 24) to explain this to him.

“Army officers will patrol the beach to catch any vendors renting out umbrellas and sun loungers. These vendors will be handed over to Cherng Talay officials to be fined for breach of municipal regulations,” Col Santi added.

“The last time we did this, we caught 10 vendors working illegally on Surin Beach,” he noted.

The vendors have been given fair warning, Col Santi pointed out.

“They have until May 1. They will have no excuse after then,” he said.

 

 

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BenPendejo | 28 April 2017 - 12:59:10

While banning vendors on the beach will remove certain money making opportunities for locals, it will also create new opportunities... like rental services.  I agree that umbrella/chair rentals should be allowed ...OFF THE BEACH...but in close proximity.  Tourists that desire that stuff can pick it up on the way to the beach, set it up wherever they want...and return it when they leave.  It will also likely create a umbrella/beach chair mafia like the jetski punks, that will start pointing at small tears and scratches that they can charge the tourists for damages, and then the cops can be standing by to help negotiate settlements.  So there, tourists get what they want, vendors are off the beach, and dishonest cheaters and corrupt police can keep fleecing tourists...perfect!

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Sam hayman | 27 April 2017 - 23:41:30

“There must not be any beach operation or any kind of rental service action on Surin Beach at all,” he said.

What a joke!

The beach mafia will always be there because a BAHT 400 fine is nothing compared to what they make each day.

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marcher | 27 April 2017 - 15:28:19

A very sensible decision. But why not every beach? Why do we have to go to Surin beach to use our chairs and parasols. Re Andy's comment tourists are happier to be out in the sun. It's why they come to bake in the sun and go home after 2 weeks with a lovely sun tan

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Discover Thainess | 27 April 2017 - 15:21:29

I wonder if the authorities have any idea of how tourists (the lifeblood of phuket) interpret these statements?

i personally cannot believe that senior military people get involved in sunbeds. What kind of island has phuket become?

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Andy | 27 April 2017 - 15:09:58

Are foreign tourists going to bring umbrellas and sun lounges in their bags from Farangland? Answer: No
Do tourists want umbrellas and beach chairs? Answer: Yes
Hence this market will be satisfied. I suggest the vendors sell the tourists the items at a distance from the beach and then buy them back again at the end of the day.No doubt someone will courier the items to the beach as well.
As ever everywhere, officialdom never ceases to demonstrate how detached from reality they are.

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